Recapping USL PRO Roster Announcements (Mar 6 – Mar 26)
The 2013 USL PRO season got underway last weekend. This means that many of the teams are close to finalizing their rosters. Below is a list of all of the roster announcements made in the last 20 days. As usual, the player’s name is followed by his position, previous team, and nationality. Of course it wouldn’t be the Union Dues if we didn’t add our two cents.
Apparently, Antigua Barracuda FC has not made any announcements related to their 2013 roster. The USL PRO website for the Barracuda roster contains a vast, empty space. The only news coming from Caribbean club was reported by The Antigua Observer. The article indicates that the club is in danger of being forced to withdraw from the league’s schedule this season due to a failure to report a roster by a league-mandated deadline. Attempts by the Union Dues to obtain statements from the league and the club have proven unsuccessful thus far.
- Kevin Klasila, goalkeeper, Charleston Battery, United States
- Jarad van Schaik, midfielder, Puerto Rico Islanders (NASL), United States
Klasila has some big shoes to fill. Andrew Dykstra, who was on loan to Charleston in 2012, has returned to D.C. United. Klasila allowed 4 goals in 3 appearances for the Battery last season.
Other recent announcements for the Battery include the transfer of midfielder, Ryan Richter, to Toronto FC. Although Richter’s presence will be missed, a source close to the club indicates that the Battery seem to have talent to spare in the midfield.
- Ben Newman, defender/midfielder, Wake Forest University, United States
- Fejiro Okiomah, defender, High Point University, United States
Time will tell how these two first-year professionals will be able to contribute to the Eagles this season.
Dayton Dutch Lions
- Eddie Hertsenberg, forward, Dayton Dutch Lions, United States
- Joseph Broekhuizen, forward, Calvin College, United States
- Ryan Grothaus, midfielder, Northern Kentucky University, United States
- Joseph Madigan, forward, Real Colorado Foxes (PDL), United States
- Wichert de Wit, goalkeeper, Drachster Boys (Eerste Klasse League – Netherlands), Netherlands
The Dutch Lions are returning the majority of the starting XI that was featured throughout 2012. The real question mark was who is going to join Eli Garner on the front line. Dutch Lions fans are hoping that answer is found in the list above. Broekhuizen appears to be the odds-on favorite to replace Gerrit jan Bartels at center forward. Hertsenberg and Madigan may be competing for the final starting forward position.
Harrisburg City Islanders
- Cristhian Hernandez, forward, Philadelphia Union (MLS), Mexico
- Greg Jordan, midfielder, Philadelphia Union (MLS), United States
- Jimmy McLaughlin, midfielder, Philadelphia Union (MLS), United States
- Yan Ekra, midfielder, Harrisburg City Islanders, Ivory Coast
- Stephen Basso, defender, Harrisburg City Islanders, Costa Rica
- Tom Brandt, defender, Harrisburg City Islanders, United States
- Morgan Langley, midfielder, Harrisburg City Islanders, United States
- Tom Mellor, forward, Harrisburg City Islanders, United States
- Jason Pelletier, midfielder, Harrisburg City Islanders, United States
- Nick Noble, goalkeeper, Harrisburg City Islanders, United States
- Andrew Welker, midfielder, Harrisburg City Islanders, United States
- Sainey Touray, forward, Harrisburg City Islanders, Gambia
Harrisburg has been slow to release information with regard to their roster with the exception of the announcement of the three players being sent to them on loan from the Philadelphia Union. Several of the returning players like have proven scoring ability. Noble posted a modest 1.273 goals-against average last season.
Los Angeles Blues
- George Davis IV, forward, Los Angeles Blues, United States
- Allan Russell, midfielder, Los Angeles Blues, Scotland
The Blues will need someone to pick up the scoring slack left by the departure of Bright Dike. That someone may be George Davis, who spent part of last season on loan to Orlando City. If the first game of 2013 is an indicator of what’s store for the rest of this year, Blues fans will be pleased.
- Freddie Braun, midfielder, Portland Timbers U23s (PDL), United States
- Kevin Molino, midfielder, Orlando City, Trinidad & Tobago
- Dom Dwyer, forward, Sporting KC (MLS), England
- Christian Duke, midfielder, Sporting KC (MLS), United States
- Yann Songo’o, defender, Sporting KC (MLS), Cameroon
- Joe Kempin, goalkeeper, Sporting KC (MLS), United States
Orlando City coach expects that each of the four players on loan from Sporting KC will be competing for a starting position. Given the roster that was already in place, these guys must not be scrubs. Dwyer has been lighting up the scoreboard in preseason friendlies against local colleges. Molino returns to City on the heels of a 2012 performance that earned him the USL PRO MVP award.
Phoenix FC Wolves
- Peabo Doue, forward, West Virginia University, United States
- Cameron Vickers, midfielder, Portland Timbers U23s (PDL), United States
Phoenix put the finishing touches on its roster with some young talent. Neither of these two breached the starting XI for the Wolves’ first-ever game against the Blues, but Vickers came on as a sub with 15 minutes left in the second half. It’s difficult to determine how much playing time this duo will see.
- Andrew Marshall, defender, Harrisburg City Islanders, United States
- Anthony Vazquez, defender, Puerto Rico Islanders (NASL), United States
The Riverhounds have plucked another talented defender from the City Islanders. The only real question is whether or not Highmark Stadium will adopt Harrisburg’s “We are Marshall” refrain after he makes a clearing header or saving tackle.
- Juan Arbalaez, defender, Virginia Commonwealth University, Colombia
- Casey Townsend, forward, D.C. United (MLS), United States
- Taylor Kemp, midfielder/defender, D.C. United (MLS), United States
- Michael Seaton, forward, D.C. United (MLS), United States
- Conor Shanosky, midfielder, D.C. United (MLS), United States
- Brian Ownby, midfielder, Houston Dynamo (MLS), United States
The last time the Union Dues spoke with the Kickers’ front office, General Manager Shelley Sowers indicated that the club was looking to find some players at forward to put the finishing touches on the roster. It’s almost as if she knew what was coming down the pike from D.C. United, Richmond’s MLS affiliate. It’s great to see the two leagues cooperate to fill each other’s needs.
- Ross LaBauex, midfielder, Colorado Rapids (MLS), United States
- Mike Reidy, midfielder, Colgate University, United States
- Josh Faga, defender, Marist College, United States
Reidy and Faga are young, local products who may struggle to find significant playing time in their rookie seasons. LaBauex adds depth to the midfield.
VSI Tampa Bay FC
- Josh Rife, defender, Charlotte Eagles, United States
- Andriy Budnyy, forward, Wilmington Hammerheads, Ukraine
- Darren Toby, midfielder, Charlotte Eagles, Trinidad & Tobago
- Tony Donatelli, midfielder, Charleston Battery, United States
- Joseph Noone, midfielder, Harrisburg City Islanders, United States
- Mauricio Salles, forward, Charlotte Eagles, Brazil
The addition of these six players, each with significant USL PRO playing experience, should just about complete the VSI roster. It also has cause the Union Dues USL PRO Editor, Ray Stellhorn, to reconsider his preseason prediction for Tampa Bay. He would have placed this team higher in the standings had he known these personnel moves were in the works.
- Daniel Roberts, midfielder, Wilmington Hammerheads, United States
- Christian Davidson, defender, Wilmington Hammerheads, England
- Jamel Wallace, defender, San Diego Boca FC (NPSL), United States
- Tom Parratt, defender, Wilmington Hammerheads, England
Wallace is the first new addition to the Hammerheads for the upcoming season. He’s joined by three of the players that helped propel Wilmington to the championship game in 2012.